Anyone who travels abroad and doesn’t keep a watchful eye on their mobile phone expenses will be familiar with the shock that accompanies opening their bill at the end of the month.
Pesky fees and hidden costs can often creep in when you least expect it, but at least there is a company that can help you out.
Tariffic, a company that specialises in analysing corporate mobile phone bills, released a holiday edition of their ‘Perfect Package Tracker’, and detailed which networks are the best for roaming overseas – which will in turn reduce the chances of bill shock.
“Tariffic constantly analyses the South African cellular market, so that it can help businesses and consumers save on their cell phone bills. Tariffic performs this analysis by using its sophisticated software to match cell phone users with the cheapest tariff plans and bundles, according to their behaviour,” it explained.
If you are traveling to the US for a snowy holiday, it turns out that MTN offers the best packages and roaming rates. Planning to go to Thailand for an exotic getaway? Well, then Vodacom is going to be your best bet.
Tariffic’s Perfect Package Tracker’ results for roaming overseas:
- Best network for travels to the United States: MTN
- Best network for travels to England: MTN
- Best network for travels to Mauritius: MTN
- Best network for travels to Thailand: Vodacom
- Overall best network for overseas travels: MTN
- Cheapest international calling from South Africa: Cell C
- Best roaming rates (calling, sending SMSs, using data): Vodacom and MTN
- Best network for receiving calls from SA while traveling: MTN
While the company reported on its own findings, it did advise however that subscribers should do their own research for roaming rates for the network which they are on.
“It is important for you to research which networks will be the cheapest to roam on when you are overseas and manually connect to the cheapest networks when you land. Roaming rates in some cases vary drastically depending on which network your phone automatically connects to upon arrival in a country overseas,” it said.
As an example, it said that if you are traveling to the US with an MTN SIM card and connect to AT&T, you’ll pay R1/MB for data roaming, but if you happen to connect to the T-Mobile network, you’ll pay a massive R225/MB for data roaming. Keep a wary eye out for those hidden costs.
[Image – Charlie Fripp]